NE STEM 4U afterschool intervention leads to gains in stem content knowledge for middle school youth
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CitationCutucache, Christine. Boham, Taylor. Luhr, Jamie. Sommers, Amie. Stevenson, Nikolaus. Sointu, Erkko. Mäkitalo-Siegl, Kati. Kärkkäinen, Sirpa. Valtonen, Teemu. Grandgenett, Neal. Tapprich, William. (2018). NE STEM 4U afterschool intervention leads to gains in stem content knowledge for middle school youth. Cogent Education, 5, 1558915. 10.1080/2331186X.2018.1558915.
Afterschool interventions in STEM are linked to learning gains during the school day. These opportunities engage and excite students about STEM concepts since they observe a more hands-on, project-oriented approach. Often these opportunities for afterschool interventions are infrequent in nature and leave gaps for students in their maturation and understanding. Herein we describe the first report of an afterschool intervention, named NE STEM 4U, targeting socioeconomically disadvantaged middle school youth via a twice weekly, year-long intervention, studied across two years. We assessed the impact of this program on i.) short-term, individual student gains in STEM content knowledge and ii.) delivery of the program in terms of appropriateness for age group and content using the DoS observation tool. We observed statistically significant gains in STEM content knowledge over short-term assessment using a multiple-group, pre-test post-test research design comparing scores in content before and after the intervention. In this report, we highlight the impact of this nascent program in Omaha Public Schools.